St. Petersburg, Florida- The U.S. Coast Guard is releasing details about a two-year investigation into secret sexual hazing aboard a Coast Guard cutter based in St. Petersburg.
The alleged abuse took place aboard Cutter Venturous over a two and a half year period between the summer of 2007 and winter of 2009. Six of those involved faced court martial and received various penalties, including military confinement, fines and discharge.
Chief Kiel Johanson was among those the Coast Guard alleges was involved. He was found guilty of abusive sexual contact, indecent exposure and assault consummated by a battery. According to a Coast Guard report, he is now required to register as a sexual offender.
Others involved were found guilty of charges including assault, disorderly conduct and lying to investigators.
In a statement from the Coast Guard, Vice Admiral Robert Parker said, "The Coast Guard does not tolerate hazing of any kind. Even the junior most Coast Guard member has the power, right, and obligation to say 'no' to hazing."
Parker says a message was sent to all Coast Guard Atlantic units reiterating the Coast Guard's strong policies against hazing.